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Whistleblowers Enter the Post-Snowden Era 129

Presto Vivace (882157) writes GovExec Magazine reporting on the aftermath of Snowden's disclosures: '...At the Intelligence Community's Office of the Inspector General, [Dan Meyer, executive director for intelligence community whistleblowing and source protection] told Government Executive that a communitywide policy directive signed in March by the director of the Office of National Intelligence "is an affirmative statement that you have to blow the whistle" upon encountering wrongdoing, noting that in the past it was seen as an option. The new directive, he added, "shows firm support for the IC IG Whistleblowing program that actively promotes federal whistleblowing through lawful disclosures, which ultimately strengthens our nation's security." The key to the campaign of openness to whistleblowers, as distinct from criminal leakers and publicity seekers, Meyer stresses, is that it "must aid the agency mission. It is developmental and helps all stakeholders understand that we have rules in effect," he added. Meyer is expecting a bow wave of whistleblower retaliation cases (which can involve punishments ranging from demotion to pay cuts to required psychiatric evaluation) to come through his office directly or through a hotline in the coming months.'

Given the realities of the insider threat program and war on whistleblowers I can't say that I am optimistic about the new directive."
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Whistleblowers Enter the Post-Snowden Era

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  • by CRCulver ( 715279 ) <> on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @08:24AM (#47153897) Homepage

    Thats what the ballot box is for. The agency mission is generally an open thing. We need whistleblowers to expose hidden wrongdoing, not to try to change policy.

    My whole point is that there is a gap between the purported mission that voters can direct, and the real mission which, as we have seen, is kept hidden from the public until whistleblowers speak out. The NSA's public mission is reassuringly worded fluff, voters could have known nothing about the agency's insistence on ready access to all American internal telecommunications until Snowden spoke out.

  • by CaptainDork ( 3678879 ) on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @09:12AM (#47154283)
    We know about these guys. How many others have access to classified information who are walking in, taking the goods, walking out and selling the stuff? The government didn't know about either of these guys. It's scary.
  • Not at all (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 03, 2014 @11:35AM (#47155859)

    It means each employee is put in a lose-lose position. When wrongdoing is observed, either:

    1) You blow the whistle using proper channels, which means you really piss off your superiors who retaliate against you in a whole host of horrible (but technically legal) ways, and even if you raise grievances for this you are in for a long, character-destroying, career-destroying, savings-destroying legal battle.

    2) You keep quiet, which (by this directive) means you are complicit in the wrongdoing, and will be punished for this should someone else ever blow the whistle (or by your own conscience).

    It is not very unlike the situation military personnel face. They are required to disobey any order that is illegal, negating the "just following orders" defense, and yet their commanders are empowered to shoot them on the spot for insubordination (and dead men tell no tales).

"I don't believe in sweeping social change being manifested by one person, unless he has an atomic weapon." -- Howard Chaykin